Floyd Mayweather Jr., born February 24, 1977 in Grand
Rapids, MI, USA. Mayweather, who was born with the name
Floyd George Sinclair, is a professional boxer who has a
record of 38-0 (24 KOs).
Since July 18, 2005, he has been rated by The Ring magazine
as the number-one pound-for-pound boxer in the world.
Mayweather has won six world boxing championships in five
different weight classes, and he is the Super welterweight
champion. His next fight will be against Ricky Hatton on
December 8, 2007.
His father, Floyd Mayweather Sr., is a former welterweight
contender. One of his uncles, Jeff Mayweather, is a former
IBO super featherweight champion. Another uncle, former
two-division world champion Roger Mayweather, is Mayweather
Jr.'s current trainer.
Mayweather had a successful amateur career of 84-6. He won
national Golden Gloves championships in 1993 (at 106 lb),
1994 (at 112 lb), and 1996 (at 125 lb). He was given the
nickname "Pretty Boy" by his amateur teammates because his
face never had cuts or bruises after fights—a result of the
defensive techniques that his father (Floyd Mayweather Sr.)
and uncle (Roger Mayweather) had taught him. In his orthodox
defensive stance, Mayweather—much like James Toney—often
utilizes the 'shoulder roll.' The shoulder roll is an
old-school boxing technique in which the right hand is held
normally or slightly higher than normal, the left hand is
down around the midsection, and the lead shoulder is raised
high on the cheek in order to cover the chin and block
punches. The right hand (from orthodox stance) is used as it
normally would be to block punches coming from the other
side, such as left hooks. From this stance, Mayweather
blocks, slips, and deflects most of his opponents' punches,
even when cornered, by twisting left and right to the rhythm
of their punches.
At the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Mayweather won a bronze
medal by reaching the finals of the featherweight (57 kg)
division's 31-boxer tournament. In the opening round,
Mayweather led 10-1 on points over Bakhtiyar Tileganov of
Kazakhstan before he won by round 2 referee stoppage. In the
second round, Mayweather outpointed Artur Gevorgyan of
Armenia 16-3. In the quarterfinals, Mayweather survived a
late rally by Lorenzo Aragon of Cuba to win 12-11. In his
semifinal bout against the eventual silver medalist, Serafim
Todorov of Bulgaria, Mayweather lost by a controversial
decision that the U.S. team officially protested. Many who
saw the bout, including the referee (who mistakenly raised
Mayweather's hand when the decision was read), believed that
Mayweather had won.
Mayweather fought his first professional bout on October
11, 1996 against fellow newcomer Roberto Apodaca. Apodaca
was knocked-out in round 2. Mayweather's trainer at the time
was his uncle, Roger Mayweather, because Floyd Mayweather
Sr. was still imprisoned after having been convicted of
illegal drug trafficking in 1993. Mayweather Sr. took over
as Mayweather Jr.'s trainer when he was released from prison
(after Mayweather Jr.'s fourteenth fight—a second round
knockout of Sam Girard). From 1996 to early 1998, Mayweather
fought against relatively easy opponents and won most of the
fights by knockout or TKO. The most notable of these fights
was a unanimous decision victory over former champion Tony
Pep on June 14, 1998.
In 1998, Mayweather won his first world title, the WBC
junior lightweight (130 lb) championship, when the corner of
Genaro Hernandez stopped the fight after round 8. Hernandez
had never been defeated at the weight class. From there,
Mayweather defended his title with performances against
contenders such as Angel Manfredy and Carlos Gerena.
Mayweather was named as The Ring magazine's fighter of the
year for 1998.
Before he fought against former WBC featherweight champion
Gregorio Vargas in early 2000, Mayweather fired his father
as his manager and replaced him with James Prince. A few
months after the fight, the rift between the father and son
became wide enough that Mayweather Jr. fired Mayweather Sr.
as his trainer as well. Roger Mayweather returned to his
role as Mayweather Jr.'s trainer in his next bout—a
non-title fight against Emanuel Burton. In an interview in
2004, Mayweather Jr. said that he loves Mayweather Sr. as
his father but feels that he has better chemistry with
Roger, and his father had put too much pressure on him to be
perfect. On a May 7 appearance on the "Tonight Show",
Mayweather stated that his father "just needs a hug" and
that "everyone should just hug his father."
Mayweather's biggest fight as a junior lightweight was on
January 20, 2001, against Diego Corrales. At the time,
neither fighter had been defeated or knocked down. In the
bout, Mayweather won every round and knocked down Corrales
five times (three times in round 7 and twice in round 10).
After the fifth knockdown, Corrales' cornermen climbed onto
the apron and stopped the fight, thereby establishing
Mayweather as one of the claimants to boxing's mythical
pound-for-pound title. At the time of the stoppage,
Mayweather was wide ahead on the scorecards, leading by the
official tallies of 89-79, 90-79, and 90-78.
In Mayweather's next bout, on May 26, 2001, future IBF
champion Carlos "Famoso" Hernández knocked down Mayweather
for the first time. Mayweather entered the bout with injured
hands. When Mayweather hit Hernández with a left hook in
round 6, the pain caused Mayweather to drop his left hand to
the canvas, and the referee called it a knockdown.
Nonetheless, Mayweather won the fight by unanimous decision.
In the award-winning documentary film More Than Famous,
Hernández's bout against Mayweather was prominently
Mayweather's last fight in the junior lightweight division
was against future junior lightweight and lightweight
champion Jesús Chávez. It was Mayweather's eighth defense of
the WBC junior lightweight title, which he had held for more
than three years. He won when Chávez's corner stopped the
fight after round 9. Mayweather had such difficulty making
weight for this fight that he did not eat for four days
before the weigh-in.
In 2002, Mayweather moved up to the lightweight (135 lb)
division. Mayweather fought only 4 bouts at this weight, but
they were all world championship fights.
Mayweather won two bouts for the WBC and The Ring
lightweight belts against José Luis Castillo. In their first
bout, Castillo had success when he cut off the ring and used
his strength to wear down Mayweather. But it was not enough
to make up for his slow start in the fight. Still, some
analysts feel that Mayweather should have lost the fight,
but he won by unanimous decision. In the rematch, Mayweather
used his quick footwork and combinations to coast to another
unanimous decision victory, this time with no controversy.
On April 19, 2003, Mayweather dominated the Dominican
Victoriano Sosa and won by unanimous decision. Mayweather's
next fight (on November 1, 2003) was in his hometown of
Grand Rapids, Michigan. He fought against the promising
South African knockout specialist Phillip Ndou, whose record
was 31-1 with 30 KOs. Uncharacteristically, Mayweather was
offensively oriented from the beginning of the fight. Round
5 was one of 2003's most action-packed. In the middle of the
round, Mayweather landed a barrage of powerful punches. Ndou
endured and threw wild punches that forced Mayweather into
the ropes, but Mayweather demonstrated his rhythmic
defensive technique and let Ndou wear himself out further.
In round 6, Ndou wobbled and was pushed down. In round 7, a
combination of three straight right hands knocked down Ndou
and caused a TKO, when N'Dou's trainers - Nick Durandt and
Tommy Brooks - contemplated throwing in the towel. However
the ref stopped the fight as Ndou did not move forward (as
part of a test to ensure he was okay from the knock down).
Mayweather then moved up to the junior welterweight (140
lb) division. His first fight in this division was against
southpaw DeMarcus Corley. Mayweather used his speed to win
the early rounds. In the first minute of round 4, Corley
landed a solid left hand and drove Mayweather into the
ropes, but Mayweather recovered and fought back ferociously.
After that round, Mayweather mostly controlled Corley.
Mayweather knocked down Corley in rounds 8 and 10, but
Corley was able to continue until the end. Mayweather won by
unanimous decision. The fight was Mayweather's only one in
On January 22, 2005, Mayweather fought against Henry
Bruseles of Puerto Rico in a WBC junior welterweight title
eliminator bout. Mayweather easily outclassed Bruseles
throughout the first seven rounds. In round 8, Mayweather
knocked down Bruseles twice, and the fight was stopped.
The win over Bruseles made Mayweather the mandatory
challenger for Arturo Gatti's WBC junior welterweight
championship. Before the fight, Mayweather was supremely
confident. He described Gatti with terms such as "a C+
fighter," "a fake," and "a blown-up club fighter." The
pay-per-view fight occurred on June 25, 2005 in Atlantic
City, New Jersey, where the fans heavily supported Gatti.
Near the end of round 1, Mayweather pushed Gatti's head down
in close and the referee instructed the fighters to "Stop
punching." Gatti broke and left himself vulnerable whilst
Mayweather either deliberately or indeliberately disobeyed
the referee's command and continued to land punches. Gatti
turned to the referee to complain and Mayweather capitalised,
sending Gatti to the canvas with more shots for what was
scored a knockdown, despite Gatti's complaints . Throughout
the next five rounds, the much faster Mayweather landed with
nearly every big shot against Gatti, who had no offense with
which he could return fire. Gatti's corner stopped the fight
after round 6—giving Mayweather his third world title. In
the post-fight interview, Mayweather praised Gatti and
claimed that his pre-fight comments "were just to sell
tickets." Among many boxing experts, Mayweather's dominance
over Gatti solidified his position as the best
pound-for-pound fighter in the world. Compubox had
Mayweather outlanding Gatti by a total of 168 to 41.
One month after the Gatti fight, Mayweather went to trial
for a domestic violence charge. He faced a minimum of one
year in prison if he was convicted. Mayweather had been
accused of violence against his former girlfriend, Josie
Harris. Harris had claimed that Mayweather had punched and
kicked her during an argument in Mayweather's Bentley,
outside a Las Vegas nightclub in 2003. During the trial,
however, Harris admitted that she had lied on the initial
police report and testified that Mayweather never hit her.
The jury acquitted Mayweather.
On November 19, 2005, Mayweather fought a non-title bout
at 147 lb against welterweight Sharmba Mitchell. In round 3,
Mayweather knocked down Mitchell with a straight right hand
to the head. In round 6, another straight right hand—this
one to Mitchell's body—dropped Mitchell again and ended the
On April 8, 2006, Mayweather defeated Zab Judah for the IBF
and vacant IBO world welterweight titles by unanimous
decision. Beforehand, the fight had been jeopardized after
Judah lost the WBC welterweight title to Carlos Manuel
Baldomir on January 7, 2006, but Mayweather's and Judah's
camps reworked the contract and decided that the fight would
go on. In the fight, Mayweather stayed calm during Judah's
aggressive early rounds. Mayweather began to dominate Judah
in round 5, and Judah eventually bled. Near the conclusion
of the tenth round, Judah hit Mayweather with a left hand
that was clearly below the belt and followed up with a
right-handed rabbit punch. After referee Richard Steele
called time with five seconds remaining in the round, Roger
Mayweather entered the ring and approached Judah, but Steele
restrained him. Judah's father and trainer, Yoel Judah,
entered the ring as well. Floyd remained in the neutral
corner while both Yoel and Zab scuffled with Roger (and
others who had entered the ring) until police and security
managed to restore order. Roger was thrown out, but the
fight continued and went the scheduled 12 rounds. Mayweather
won by the official scores of 116-112, 117-111, and 119-109.
Compubox statistics showed Mayweather as landing 188 punches
to 82 for Judah.
Five days after the fight, the Nevada State Athletic
Commission decided not to overturn the result of the bout,
but Roger Mayweather was fined US$200,000 and suspended for
one year. The suspension entails that Roger can train
Mayweather Jr. in the gym but cannot work the corner during
fights. On April 17, 2006, the IBF ordered a rematch between
Mayweather and Judah, but the NSAC suspended Judah for one
year on May 8, 2006. Mayweather vacated the IBF title on
June 20, 2006.
Mayweather rejected an offer of US$8 million to fight
Antonio Margarito and split with promoter Bob Arum for the
possibility of a superfight with Oscar de la Hoya. De la
Hoya, however, postponed his decision until 2007, leaving
Mayweather in the awkward position of choosing his next
opponent, while deflecting accusations that he had ducked
Margarito. Mayweather considered moving up in weight again
to fight junior middleweight champion Cory Spinks, but
because of negative publicity and Spinks' impending
mandatory defense of his title, he finally decided to face
WBC and The Ring welterweight champion Carlos Baldomir on
November 4, 2006 in Las Vegas.
Mayweather would ultimately defeat Baldomir by unanimous
decision for both titles. Ringside punch statistics showed
Mayweather landing 199 of 458 punches, while Baldomir landed
just 79 of 670. Mayweather earned $8 million for the fight,
while Baldomir was paid $1.6 million. Both were career highs
in earnings for each fighter.
During the fight, Baldomir chased Mayweather sluggishly,
unable to land any meaningful shots but trying to remain the
busier fighter, while Mayweather picked away with sharp jabs
and hooks, even managing to cut Baldomir over his left eye
in the first round. This pattern continued throughout the
fight. The defensive-minded Mayweather put on what many
witnesses and Mayweather himself called a "boxing clinic" to
take Baldomir's WBC and Ring welterweight titles in a
lopsided 12 round decision. Two judges had Mayweather
winning all 12 rounds, with the other giving all but two
rounds to Mayweather. After the fight Mayweather called out
for a fight with Oscar De la Hoya.
Light Middleweight/Superfight against Oscar De La Hoya
Mayweather's next match was the long-anticipated
superfight against six-division champion and current WBC
junior middleweight titleholder Oscar De La Hoya on May 5,
2007. De La Hoya's belt was on the line, which required
Mayweather to move up in weight from 147 pounds to 154.
Despite De La Hoya's insistence that money was not a factor,
the Mayweather-De La Hoya bout set the record for most PPV
buys for a boxing match with 2.4 million households,
shattering the record of 1.99 million for Evander Holyfield-Mike
Tyson II. Around $120 million in revenue was generated by
the PPV, which set another record. With the percentages
factored in, Oscar De La Hoya ended up earning $58 million
for the bout, the highest purse ever for a fighter. The
previous record was $35 million, held by Tyson and Holyfield.
Floyd Mayweather earned about $35 million for the fight.
At one time, Floyd Mayweather Sr., Mayweather Jr.'s father,
was in talks to train Oscar De La Hoya and be in his corner
during the fight but he decided to train with Freddie Roach.
Roger Mayweather, Mayweather Sr.'s brother, was in
Mayweather Jr.'s corner and trained him for the fight.
Mayweather Jr. came out escorted by 50 Cent rapping to his
song Straight to the Bank.
Mayweather Jr. won the bout by a split decision, winning the
title and improving his record to 38-0. Many fans booed the
decision as it was read and even Mayweather Sr. said he felt
his son had lost. Compubox numbers show
that Mayweather landed considerably more punches even though
he threw roughly half as many. The official
judges' scores were 116-112 Mayweather, 115-113 Mayweather,
and 115-113 De La Hoya.
Return to Welterweight
Mayweather decided to relinquish his WBC junior
middleweight championship and kept his WBC welterweight
championship. On July 28, 2007, it was announced that
Mayweather will come out of his short retirement to fight
light welterweight champion Ricky Hatton which will be
promoted by Oscar De La Hoya's promotion company Golden Boy
Promotions and Floyd Mayweather's "Mayweather Promotions."
The bout was labeled "Undefeated" and will take place on
December 8, 2007, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas,
Nevada. In the build up to their fight, Mayweather claimed
that he is the greatest boxer ever, saying: "I respect what
Robinson and Ali did for the sport. But I am the greatest,
and this is my time."